Mozilla dropped a bomb recently when it stop development on Firefox for Windows 8, citing the slow adoption of the Modern UI as the deciding factor in this strange decision.

The news hit the technology world by sudden surprise, as the app was already in beta.

And now one of the developers that worked on Firefox for Windows 8 has expressed his views on the whole ordeal saying that the discontinuation of the Metro version of the browser does, in no way, imply that the operating system itself is in trouble.

Straight and square:

“Is Windows 8.1 modern UI in trouble? No. Did Mozilla make the right decision with Metro given the current circumstances? Yes.”

He further confirmed that while the Metro version of Firefox did not attract too many testers, but there are a number of reasons for this — it does not necessarily mean that users are not interested in this touch optimized version.

The wholesale changes that Microsoft made in Windows 8 might actually be the cause.

The modern operating system does not allow a browser to run in Modern UI unless it is also configured to be the default choice in the desktop environment. And that’s not all, choosing a default browser in Windows 8 is also a lot more difficult as this process has been revised, and comes with a series of steps.

But ultimately, while Firefox for Windows 8 is a loss for the modern operating system, there is still that slim chance that Mozilla will get back to development at a later date.

All that is required is a larger user base, and some additional usability optimizations from Microsoft.

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  1. Politically correct thing to say, however, he didn’t say much. I think there might be more not said than said in his quote. I wonder what made Firefox scrap their development for 8.1. Windows or Mozilla?

  2. What does he mean, “given the current circumstances?” Do we have more details on why they didn’t follow through?

    • He probably means the current climate. As long as people see that the status quo is criticizing everything Microsoft, it will scare developers off.

      • Good point. Microsoft isn’t “innovative” or “quality” at least according to the public landscape. I think it’s a bunch of baloney, but apparently it scared off Firefox.

      • Rodney Longoria / March 19, 2014 at 9:53 pm /Reply

        I think it is more about security issues (Mozilla being an open-sourced project), and it not being user-friendly enough to make it the default browser. Also, so many changes to the Modern code from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1 and the soon-to-be launch of the Spring Update next month.

        • True. But I have not given up hope of seeing it ported to the Metro environment. All popular software programs will get there eventually.

          One of the greatest strengths of the Windows platform is the sheer variety of software, unmatched variety of software. And this legacy will continue, should continue.

  3. I hope Firefox gets back on board soon. I think this would be a win-win for both companies and makes too much sense not to do. Get together guys!

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